24 Aug 5 Best Ways to Treat Morton’s Neuroma
In a frightening world where each step you take could lead to the next foot or ankle injury, keeping up with medical terms can prove quite tasking. Morton’s neuroma is a very painful nerve condition that leads to a benign nerve growth between the third and fourth toes.
Patients suffering from Morton’s neuroma frequently complain of a burning feeling, numbness and significant foot pain on the balls of their feet. Morton’s neuroma mostly affects women who often wear tight or high-heeled shoes.
How does Morton’s Neuroma Develop?
Any excessive pressure exerted on your toes, or an injury to the nerves in the ball of your feet can trigger Morton’s neuroma. When the nerve sandwiched between the third and fourth toe is regularly pinched, it reacts by enlarging and building a protective wall of fibrous tissue around itself.
Morton’s Neuroma is not a form of Cancer
Despite having coined the term neuroma, this ailment is in no way related to cancer. The mass of fibrous tissue should not be likened to an actual tumor. This mass of fibrous tissue should be understood as a perineural fibroma. Put simply; a perineural fibroma is a build-up of fibrous tissue surrounding a nerve located between the metatarsal bones.
Before resorting to surgical treatments, podiatrists recommend implementing nonsurgical treatment options to relieve pain. For your convenience, we have shortlisted the top 5 best ways to treat Morton’s neuroma.
Wearing shoes with accommodating toe boxes
Wearing tight, improperly fitted shoes can cause Morton’s Neuroma. High-heeled shoes (especially those with tapered toe boxes) contribute significantly to this condition. The repeated wearing of such shoes can trigger and pronounce Morton’s neuroma to unacceptable levels.
Podiatrists recommend wearing shoes with spacious toe boxes as a primary treatment of Morton’s neuroma.
Use of Ice Packs
Ice packs can help a great deal in keeping down inflammation, as well as speeding up the healing process. For this treatment to be effective, one must studiously apply an ice pack on the affected area at least twice a day.
An alternative form of using the ice pack treatment would be to alternate it with a heating pad for an equal amount of time. This is called contrast therapy. The change between the hot and cold works to relieve pressure due to swelling. The contrasting temperatures also enhance blood flow to the affected area, in that way speeding up healing.
Orthotics devices are designed to extend support to the foot while compensating for foot deformities. They are an effective nonsurgical treatment for Morton’s neuroma as well. You can incorporate shoe inserts into appropriate shoes with wide toe boxes for a perfect fit.
Off-the-shelf orthotics are available for patients seeking immediate relief. However, a custom orthotic, specially designed by a qualified podiatrist, is highly recommended.
Taking part in Physical Therapy
Physical therapy works best when combined with all other treatment options mentioned in this article. As a contributor in the healing process, physical therapy helps in strengthening the foot muscles affected by Morton’s neuroma. Such physical therapy exercises may include (but are not limited to):
- Stretching exercises
- Toe and ankle exercises
- Foot massages
Medication assists in keeping the immense pain associated with Morton’s neuroma at an acceptable and tolerable level. With the pain in check, one can participate fully in the other forms of treatment and hasten their healing process. Among the medications administered by podiatrists include:
- Analgesics such as Tylenol
- Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
- Antidepressants such as amitriptyline
All five treatment methods explained work harmoniously in doing away with all signs and symptoms of Morton’s neuroma. If symptoms persist despite following these treatment options, your podiatrist may resort to further aggressive treatments. These may include injection of corticosteroids into the affected area or much intensive surgical procedures.
For more in-depth information and diagnosis against Morton’s Neuroma, visit a podiatrist near you.